Last week, we had 23 Lower Sixth pupils from various schools across Cornwall, but also from further away, on site. They participated in our week-long Year 12 Summer School. Lectures included topics such as satellite communications, engineering principles, orbital mechanics, maths for communications, applications of satellite data, and even the business aspects of running an earth station, just to name a few. Several guest speakers kindly contributed, including Stefano Casalegno from the Satellite Applications Catapult, Melissa Thorpe from Aerohub, and Ross James, Deputy CEO of the UK Space Agency.
The pupils were able to practice their teamwork and presentations skills in a hands-on project, which taught them in an interactive manner how a personal computer works. They were so engaged in the their projects that every free minute - even scheduled breaks - were used to fine tune another detail or to try a new approach to fixing a problem. The group also learned about historic technology in satellite communications, thanks to the efforts of the Goonhilly Heritage Society.
Parents and teachers were able to attend the six teams' final presentations, and were extremely impressed by the amount of knowledge and skill the pupils gained throughout the week. The week was rounded off by a sunny Friday afternoon, and the group was excited to have their group photo taken by a quadcopter. Many of the pupils are now returning home for the summer with a renewed or increased enthusiasm to pursue STEM studies and careers.
Here at Goonhilly, we are looking forward to welcoming another cohort of pupils to our Summer School next year!